I wait quietly, I try to be inconspicuous. Much of my life is occupied in such things. Any sound, any slight slight sound, an indication that my victim is coming.
Nearly two hours have passed since I arrived. I am standing very still, but I think my legs are about to fall asleep. They've been starting to hurt.
If I were a higher rank, I wouldn't have to do stupid things like this. I could make flashy entrances. I could flaunt my power. I could challenge people to fight and then not play by the rules...
Instead, I wait, assistant to someone who doesn't have these boring jobs. But they were in my position once, right?
Seems like the world is getting promoted before me. I don't know why Team Rocket hasn't noticed me yet... I work well. I am patient and show no remorse... outwardly, anyway...
I shouldn't be thinking. Thoughts are distractions... distractions from my post, but at the same time, it distracts me from my tingling legs. Aggh, one would think I would be used to this by now. I still can't hear anyone. I hope this wasn't another false alarm. I want a bit of conflict. I want to be promoted.
The stillness of the night brings memories back. It was a night like this, I was sleepwalking, I woke up, I was in a forest. After Dad died, I was alone in the house, so there was nobody to stop me from sleepwalking... I had never gone so long before. I didn't know where I was, and I was just a kid, but I saw a silvery Venomoth flying overhead, and then the distant sparkle of Vileplume pollen in the air, and the sound of Scythers clicking, and Ekans snoring from the trees. I didn't think any of them would hurt me. I went to sleep.
I'd like to go to sleep now. My legs already have. I can't feel them. I don't think anything's gonna happen tonight anyway. They should have come by by now... forget it, forget it, indulge in memories if it helps you forget the present.
It wasn't much, that night, but I wanted to be a trainer after it. Not a Pokemon Master or any such farfetched goal - why set yourself something unattainable? - just a trainer, with a coupla Pokemon as friends and some vague direction in life. Or not.
That's why I joined The Team, you know. They wouldn't let me become a trainer. My family's reputation preceeded me, they weren't going to risk giving me any sort of power, oh no. But it was lonely by myself, and it was frustrating having absolutely no options, so I joined Team Rocket. They gave anyone who showed promise a Pokemon to use...
But it has been a couple of years, and I still don't have a Pokemon. I just take them from other people. My dad would be proud of me, but I'm not. It's not that I feel guilty, I mean, most trainers are bad anyway, just that this is pretty useless. What's the point of it if you don't get one of your own? I don't get any sort of benefit from being a Rocket, I just get these stupid jobs. I want to fight. I want to be known as a threat.
It's getting hot anyway.
I can't take this any more. My legs sort of buckle under me, and I slide down against the wall. Nobody's gonna come, obviously, so I close my eyes. I can hear city sounds, no Pokemon in sight, but I go to sleep again. Being awake for two days straight is kind of a good cure for insomnia.
Two people make their way quietly down the corridor, looking furtively about for any signs of movement, for any indication that they mightn't be alone... They both carry Pokeballs, inside which are fine prizes for any Rocket.
One of them, with trained sensitive hearing, picks up on a breathing other than that of his partner.
"Down there," he whispers, and his friend nods. Their foosteps make no sound as they creep towards the source. Behind the pipes of the hot-water system, a small, almost childlike figure is sprawled, the dark R imprinted on her clothes the only indication of her intent.
"What a threat," mutters the other, sarcastically.
"Do you think she was waiting for us?"
"Well, there's a phone in the room down the end there. I'm sure the cops would be interested to know about this."
"Aww, she's just a kid."
"She's just a Rocket."
The first man grabs his colleague's arm and pulls him down the corridor. He, in turn, stumbles and trips, falling heavily. He lands against one of the pipes, sending the crash echoing down the hall.
"Clumsy idiot!" snarls the first. He recognises little point in keeping his voice down now. But his friend smiles. It had the desired effect. The girl's eyes snap open, and she scrambles to her feet in an instant, before doubling over and rubbing her legs in pain.
"Is something wrong, mademoiselle?"
Her head shoots up, she realises, she let her guard down, but it's too late to fight now. She scuttles out of hiding and runs like a frightened rabbit down the corridor, limping slightly. Nobody makes an effort to stop her.
"She's just a kid."
The 'kid', safely out of the way, leans against the wall and rubs furiously at her eyes. She wonders if she is cut out for this, and mentally curses herself for being weak. It doesn't matter. She knows she cannot get promoted now.